Giants manager Bruce Bochy gave updates on rookie outfielder Mike Yastrzemski (left hand) and Tommy-John survivor Johnny Cueto Monday, ahead of a homestand-opener with Arizona in which the skipper penciled infielder Abiatal Avelino into the left-field position.
Bochy said Yastrzemiski is day-to-day with a left-hand contusion, earned Sunday during the Giants 5-4 win over the A’s at the Coliseum.
Oakland’s lefty-reliever Jake Diekman hit Yaz flush on the left hand with a 95-mph sinker and the 28-year old phenom, who’s hitting .270 with a 123 OPS+ and 17 homers since putting on a Giants uniform in late-May, was pulled from the game a couple of innings later.
The Giants skipper said Yastrzemski is doing ok but not ready to get back in the lineup yet:
“There's a little swelling there, it was pretty good contusion. So we put him at day-to-day, he can't go today, but there’s a chance he could go tomorrow.”
The team is pleased with how Cueto's rehab from Tommy John surgery is going and as of now, Bochy said they expect to stick with the plan that would see him returning to the big league club sometime in mid-September.
Cueto is scheduled to throw 60-65 pitches in Sacramento Monday night and will be re-evaluated after his start. Bochy said he saw a recent bullpen of Cueto’s at Oracle Park and he was impressed by the shimmying righty.
Of Cueto’s rehab progress Bochy said:
“Spring Training basically is what it is. That's why you go to Spring Training, you build the strength and stamina that it requires you to have as a starter, and that's what he's doing. It's been a while since he's pitched.”
Cueto's last big league outing was July 28 of last year.
Avelino, batting in the six-spot in the series-opener with the D-Backs, has never played an outfield position, even in the minors.
According to Bochy, the 24-year-old middle-infielder previously spent time in the Yankees farm-system taking reps in the outfield to enhance his versatility, and the Giants also had him practice in the outfield last season.
But Bochy admitted that Avelino has not spent any time out there this year:
“I'll be honest, he hasn't been getting a lot of work out there—he is today, he'll get a pretty good crash-course. But he's excited, and that's the biggest part of it. There's no hesitation he's been wanting to get out there and in this situation, I don't want him to feel bad if he doesn't quite make the play.”